Dr Jane Povey, Clinical Lead for Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin Integrated Care System (ICS), is calling on everyone who qualifies for a booster jab, but has not yet had one, to book an appointment and get vaccinated before Christmas.
The call came after hard working NHS staff in Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin delivered 48,943 vaccinations between last Monday – when the booster campaign ramped up – and yesterday (Sunday). That’s almost 1,000 vaccinations ahead of the regional target. That number is expected to surpass 50,000 today (Monday).
Dr Povey said: “With Omicron cases soaring and two doses of the vaccine not providing the protection we need it is vital to get a booster and lower your risk of serious illness or hospitalisation.
“Unvaccinated people and those who have had just one or two doses of the vaccine do not have sufficient protection – the clinical evidence shows that people need a booster to reduce their chances of contracting Omicron and spreading it to others. The booster also improves their chances of having good immunity against suffering with symptoms.
“Like all medicines, the Covid vaccines can cause side effects, but please don’t be put off. Any side effects are often mild and short lived, but the benefit of having the booster for you, your family and your friends is substantial – getting boosted is our best defence and hope of protecting people against the new variant.
“Getting boosted is the greatest gift you can give yourself and your loved ones this Christmas.”
UK Health Security Agency data shows that two doses of a Covid vaccine are not enough to stop people becoming unwell from Omicron, but a third booster prevents around 75% of people getting any Covid symptoms.
Every adult in the region is eligible for a jab three months after their second dose following updated guidance from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation on 29 November.
Anyone in the region who has not had their first or second dose is also encouraged to book an appointment as soon as possible.
It’s now even easier for people in Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin to get their jab as a large number of sites are available at convenient locations, including shopping centres, fire stations and town centres, as well as local pharmacies and GP surgeries.
All eligible people aged 18 and over can use the National Booking Service or call 119 to make an appointment and walk-in vaccination sites can be found on the NHS online walk-in finder, allowing people to be jabbed without the need for an appointment.